Chhipi

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Chhipi
Regions with significant populations
India
Languages
HindiHaryanvi
Religion
Hinduism 100%
Related ethnic groups
Muslim ChhipiChhimbaChhipaBhavsar

The Chhipi, pronounced as Chhimpi as well, are a Hindu caste found in the states of Haryana, Rajasthan,delhi.And . in India. The Chhipi are one of a number communities in India that were traditionally connected with dyeing and printing clothes, other groups include the Bhavsar in Maharashtra, the Chhimba in Punjab and the Chhipa in Gujarat.

Origin[edit]

According to their traditions, the Chhipi are originally Rajputs who were imprisoned by Taimur at the fort of Lohargarh in Rajasthan. The Rajputs then hid, and were known as the chhipna Rajputs after the Hindi word for hidden which is chhipana. Over time chhipna was corrupted to chhipi/chhimpa. Other traditions state that they get their name from the Hindi word chhapna, which means to print. In Uttar Pradesh, the Tonks, are mainly dyers, while the Hansari and Pacchade are mainly calico printers. There is also a fifth group of Muslim Chhipis, who are converts to Islam from the Chhipi caste. They are found mainly in the districts of Saharanpur District, Muzaffarnagar, Meerut, Bulandshahr, Agra, Mathura, Hathras and Hamirpur. A small number are also found in the Haridwar District of Uttarakhand.

In Haryana, the community’s traditional occupation was dyeing and printing of clothes. They are found throughout Haryana and speak Haryanvi. There connection with the Chhimba community of Punjab is uncertain.

Present circumstances[edit]

In Uttar Pradesh, the four sub-divisions are strictly endogamous, as well as there being no intermarriage with the Muslim Chhipi. Each sub-group is further divided into clans known as gotras, and marriages are forbidden within the gotra. Important clans include the Gidharwal, Gotre, Jagarwal, Singhmar,Shaan, and Jalotare. Most are now petty traders, a few are cultivators and wage labourers. They are Hindus, except the Muslim Chhipi sub-group, and are followers of Namdev. They are closely associated with the Namdev temples. The Chhipi speak the Khari boli dialect of Hindi.

In neighbouring Haryana, the Chhipi community's main clans include the Chooriyapar, Moosla, Gadaiyya, Gadhe,Khatti, Contwal and Lakhmara. Each of these clans are of equal status and intermarry.

The Chhipi are still involved with the printing and dyeing of clothes. A small number have now entered other professions. In addition, the Chhipi are also involved in sewing and selling of quilts. Like other artisan castes, they have also seen a decline in their traditional occupation. A good many are now wage labourers, with a smaller number who have taken to agriculture. Chhipi is listed in the central list of Other Backward Classes.[1]

References[edit]